Cash cow drivers will be affected as councils set to increase parking fees by up to double
City councils will increase – and in some cases double – car parking fees in what critics say is an unfair plan to fill funding gaps by targeting motorists.
Local authorities already collect more than £1.8million a year from drivers who pay to park their vehicles in tens of thousands of municipal car parks and on roads across the country. Now, rising fees, timed to coincide with next month’s municipality tax hikes, will put further pressure on cash-strapped drivers.
For some, parking fees will increase by 10 percent. But in other areas, like Leicester, drivers are facing a 100 per cent increase in the hourly rate, from £1 to £2.
Other communities increasing their rates are Plymouth (from £1.50 to £2 an hour) and Norwich, where five-hour parking has gone up from £6 to £10.
Woking Council raised its prices – by as much as 25 per cent – on February 6, while people parking in Kent, Cornwall, Yorkshire, Rutland and most areas of London also have to pay more.
And that’s not all. In addition to increasing their parking fees, city governments are also charging for locations that used to be free and extending the hours for which they charge. Hertfordshire, for example, is scrapping its free Sunday and bank holiday parking.
Local authorities already collect more than £1.8million a year from drivers who pay to park their vehicles in tens of thousands of municipal car parks and on roads across the country
Motorists’ groups warn the increases are unfairly targeting people unable to switch to expensive and unreliable public transport. They also point out that the new policy could be another blow to stricken city centers.
The RAC’s Simon Williams said last night: “People have to use their cars to go into town to shop, bank, go to the post office and socialize. For many, public transport is neither convenient nor affordable nor practical.”
He added: “And of course it’s not just motorists who are affected. Shops, cafés, restaurants and pubs in areas with high parking fees are also affected. You will lose customers. People can instead choose a retail park or another city where parking is cheaper. Or they shop online.
“We’re going to end up with empty parking lots — and they’re not going to make any money at all.”
Brian MacDowall, a director of the Alliance of British Drivers, told The Mail on Sunday: “Once again, motorists are the easy targets – cash cows for town hall bosses to cover deficits.
“Councils complain about a lack of footfall, but increase parking by a lot more than the inflation rate – further discouraging people. Increases should be fair and proportionate, not inflation-busting.’
Meanwhile, councils admit they need more money to cover deficits.
A spokesman for the Local Government Association, which represents more than 350 local authorities across England and Wales, said: “The cost of providing public services has risen dramatically with rapidly rising inflation. Many municipalities face major challenges and difficult decisions as they set their budgets and try to protect their services from cuts next year.’
https://www.soundhealthandlastingwealth.com/uncategorized/cash-cow-drivers-hit-as-councils-are-set-to-hike-car-parking-charges-by-as-much-as-double/ Cash cow drivers will be affected as councils set to increase parking fees by up to double